100 Interactions, 2 today
For a long period in the ongoing SEC v. Ripple case, the regulatory agency has ignored the defendants’ request to provide specific documents important to Ripple’s defence. After days of passively waiting for the SEC to produce the records, the defendants have finally filed their request to compel their production.
Before proceeding, it is worth mentioning that the SEC recently requested an extension of the discovery dates, alleging that the defendants had “raised a number of concerns regarding the SEC’s review and production of internal documents.” However, in their motion, the defendants claimed,
“… the SEC cites its own delay as a reason for extending the schedule. The only way to solve this problem is with strict deadlines.”
Needless to add, the court had previously directed the agency to explore all relevant repositories for documents and discovery for XRP, Bitcoin, or Ether communication between itself [the SEC] and external third parties. After the SEC objected, the court confirmed and instructed the agency to do so. The defendants claimed, using the same as the foundation of their case,
“Despite repeated instructions, the SEC persists in refusing to search an obvious repository for responsive evidence on external communications.”
The motion to compel pointed out,
“The FinHub electronic mailbox is a readily searchable repository of third party communications about Bitcoin, Ether, and XRP, yet the SEC has flatly refused to search the FinHub mailbox.”
The SEC darting the relentless requests managed to garner a lot of reactions from the community. Popular attorney James K. Filan, for instance, opined that Judge Netburn would not be pleased with the SEC for not obliging to the court’s order. Attorney Jeremy Hogan pitched in as well, tweeting,
The legal issues in a discovery battle are pretty boring to me – BUT WHAT THE HE** DOES THE SEC NOT WANT RIPPLE TO SEE?? That has me all sorts of curious! https://t.co/BJMh5p97Sk
— Jeremy Hogan (@attorneyjeremy1) June 4, 2021
Garlinghouse and Larsen also made a clear request to the agency to submit documentation pertaining to its policies governing SEC employees’ trading in, acquiring, or selling of digital assets and virtual currencies, as well as revisions and revisions to such policies. They claimed that the SEC also refused to release the aforementioned “non-burdensome” materials.
Drawing parallels between the SEC refusing to turn in documents and asking some additional time to conduct the discovery, John E Deaton asserted that the agency would now find it difficult to maintain its credibility. Further highlighting the SEC’s likely argument, he tweeted,
It’s difficult to maintain credibility when you ask the court for more time to conduct discovery while at the same time refusing to turn over relevant documents already ordered by the Court.
Even a patient and courteous Judge like Judge Netburn, has her limits. https://t.co/BGz0qoJOpc
— John E Deaton (@JohnEDeaton1) June 4, 2021
Justifying the relevance and essence of the documents, the defendants also claimed,
“The documents the Defendants seek in this request are relevant because they show how the SEC itself has categorised and classified XRP and other digital assets, including Bitcoin and Ether, pursuant to its own policies.”
Furthermore, Ripple Labs requested that the court establish a deadline for the SEC to deliver the OIEA (Office of Investor Education and Advocacy) external communications and internal SEC papers that the judge ordered to be returned. The motion also pointed out that the SEC had not issued a single answer to the OIEA probe.
“The SEC has repeatedly delayed its production, while telling Judge Torres that the ordered discovery was irrelevant and needless.”
The defendants concluded by outrightly asking the court to order the regulatory agency to submit all the aforementioned documents no later than 18 June.